preparation hell

you’ve got to burn
straight up and down
and then maybe sidewise
for a while
and have your guts
slugged by the
bully
and the demonic
ladies,
you’ve got to run
along the edge of
madness
teetering,
you’ve got to drink a
river of booze,
you’ve got to starve
like a Winter’s
alleycat,
you’ve got to live
within the imbecility
of at least a dozen
cities,
then maybe
maybe
maybe
you might know
where you are
for a tiny
blinking
moment.

Author
Charles Bukowski
Written
1991
Source
Original manuscript